Varicose veins affect more than a third of Americans, impairing circulation and causing a variety of symptoms. Your veins contain tiny valves that open and shut to keep blood moving back to your heart.

With varicose veins, these valves don’t work the way they should, allowing blood to move backward and collect behind them. Fortunately, treatments are available — but you need to know what symptoms to look for and when to seek care.

As a leading provider of varicose vein treatments for patients in Orlando, Sebring, and Davenport, Florida, Ashish Pal, MD, helps patients at Vein & Cardiovascular Center find relief for their varicose veins.

Here are four common symptoms he wants you to know about, along with a brief review of available treatments.

1. Leg pain

Varicose veins prevent normal blood flow in your legs, which can cause pain in the tissues surrounding the veins. Inflammation and swelling around the vein irritate tiny nerves, leading to aching sensations and cramps.

2. Leg fatigue or heaviness

Veins carry blood back to your heart. Varicose veins interfere with that process. When blood flow is delayed, it can cause feelings of heaviness, especially in the lower legs.

Fatigue, or tired sensations in your legs, is also common, especially if you spend a lot of time on your feet or after periods of physical activity.

3. Itching sensations

Varicose veins cause irritation and inflammation under your skin. Swelling around the vein presses on the skin, causing itching or burning sensations.

At the same time, swelling makes skin more fragile. Rubbing or scratching the area can cause sores, which in turn can lead to deeper ulcers and infections.

4. Swollen ankles

Because they impair your circulation, varicose veins allow blood and other fluids to collect in your lower legs or ankles. Excess fluids leak into the tissues surrounding the vein, increasing your risk of serious leg sores called venous ulcers.

Treating varicose veins

As a vascular disease physician, Dr. Pal is skilled in the most advanced varicose vein treatments, enabling him to tailor care to each patient’s unique needs.

Prior to recommending treatment, Dr. Pal examines and evaluates your veins and symptoms and reviews your medical history. He may also consider lifestyle factors, like whether you’re a smoker or if you spend a lot of time on your feet, before recommending care.

Some people with mild varicose veins can find relief with conservative treatment, like compression garments designed to reduce inflammation and discomfort. But these treatments can’t eliminate problematic veins, so your symptoms are likely to return.

To eliminate varicose veins and improve leg circulation, Dr. Pal often recommends sclerotherapy injections to close off varicose veins or VenaSeal™, which uses a special medical adhesive to seal the vein. Both treatments are performed in the office.

If you have more serious varicose vein problems, like deep vein thrombosis (DVT), he may recommend another type of procedure to reach the deeper veins affected by DVT. Afterward, he helps you learn how to prevent a recurrence and improve your vascular health overall.

Make vein health a priority

The new year is a great time to commit to better health. Considering your body depends on healthy veins, it’s also a great time to ensure your veins are as healthy as they can be.

A vein evaluation is the first step toward preventing or managing varicose veins and other vein problems. To schedule your evaluation, book an appointment online or over the phone with Dr. Pal and the team at Vein & Cardiovascular Center today.

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